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Little Herr Friedemann and Other Stories…
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Little Herr Friedemann and Other Stories (Modern Classics) (1961)

by Thomas Mann

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they form an autobiography in the guise of fiction', 19 Feb. 2014
By
sally tarbox

This review is from: Little Herr Friedemann and Other Stories (Modern Classics) (Paperback)
Sixteen quite short stories by Mann, written between 1896-1911 and taken from the larger collection 'Stories of a Lifetime'.
Over just a few pages, Mann succeeds in bringing a character or situation vividly to life: we meet men who are outsiders, ridiculed by others - in two stories (horribly) by the women they adore, while the third such victim, jeered at even by children when he goes out, decides to buy a dog, who at last will be his subordinate...
In other stories Mann considers how one becomes disillusioned with life or slides into a dilettante lifestyle... And we meet various other characters: the wife, consistently shamed by her flirtatious husband's behaviour; the wretched drunk, visiting his deceased family in the churchyard; the twin siblings with an unhealthy obsession for each other...
A fascinating read. ( )
  starbox | Jul 9, 2016 |
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I confess that I was completely bewildered  by the conversation which I had with this extraordinary man.

(from 'Disillusionment')
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A selection of some of Thomas Mann's best work taken from the larger collection 'Stories of a Lifetime'. Ranging from his earlier pieces such as 'Little Herr Friedmann', written near the beginning of his career, to later works such as 'The Fight between Jappe and Do Escobar', these stories show the evolution of one of the 20th century's greatest writers.
Throughout Mann explores his personal themes: his deep affinity for music, his concern for the artist's equivocal position in the world and his interest in the isolation of individuals. Contemplative, imaginative and at times wryly humorous, these stories are the stepping stones of what Mann called 'the road which we must walk to learn of ourselves.' Taken together they form an autobiography in the guise of fiction.
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